Impact of Early Childhood Caries on Quality of Life of Children and Their Parents: A Cross Sectional Study
Introduction: Early Childhood Caries (ECC) is emerging as a public health issue and proper understanding of its impact on quality of life of children and their parents is required to be evaluated so that preventive and treatment protocols are devised. The aim of this cross sectional questionnaire based study was to assess the impact of ECC on QOL of Children and their parents.
Material and Methods: This questionnaire based cross sectional study was conducted on (n=100) healthy children with clinically diagnosed ECC using DMFT index who attended dental outpatient department of our Institute during the year 2020-2022. Children diagnosed with ECC and their Parents were given separate pre tested & pre validated questionnaires. After completing the questionnaire appropriate statistical tests were applied and results were analysed.
Results: Children with ECC were divided on the basis of age into 4 age Groups. The results showed that as age increased the DMFT score also increased. Comparative Analysis of sleeping problems in children and ability of parents to concentrate on their work with child DMFT scores showed statistical significant results.
Conclusion: Within the limitations of our study it may be concluded that ECC impacts the quality of life of children as well as their parents. Most impacting parameter affecting the QOL in children was problem encountered during sleeping while their parents had concentration problems at work. Burden of ECC in children need to be evaluated through validated information retrieval models for assessing its impact on Child-Parents QOL so that early detection, prevention and interventions may be done.
Keywords: Early Childhood Caries (ECC), Quality of Life (QOL), Cross Sectional Study